As the RV industry wraps up a rollercoaster year, RVBusiness is rolling out a six-part, year-end, “Capitol Talk 2020 In Perspective” video series, sponsored by Wells Fargo CDF and Protective Asset Protection. The series features key leaders from the RV and campground industries who, from their various perspectives, try to recap the crazy year that was while taking a look at the year ahead.
Today’s episode – sponsored by Wells Fargo CDF and the final video in the series – is “RVDA DSI/Quality Circle Awards,” which focuses on the RV Dealers Association’s (RVDA) Dealer Satisfaction Index/Quality Circle Awards, including who won them and some of the trend stories behind the scenes. In addition to the announcement of the award winners by Phil Ingrassia (RVDA), Chris Andro (Hemlock Hills RV in Southington, Conn.), and Ron Shepherd (Camperland of Oklahoma, Tulsa), the video features a discussion on industry’s current state of affairs with several representatives from DSI-winning manufacturers including Mollie Hansen (Airstream), Mike Terlep (Coachmen), Kyle Miller (Cruiser RV), Kyle Kwasny (Dutchmen), Todd Grubb (East to West), John Stringer and Todd Martin (Forest River), Ryan Elias (Leisure Travel Vans), John Sammut (Newmar), Don Clark (Grand Design) and Andy Baer (Tiffin).
Previously, the first episode of the Capitol Talk video series was “RV Dealer Roundtable on State of the Market,”a panel of five of North America’s most respected dealers gathered to discuss the state of the market including Debbie Brunoforte of Little Dealer Little Prices, Jon Ferrando of RV Retailer LLC, Jeff Hirsch of Campers Inn RV, Mike Regan of Crestview RV, and Ron Shepherd of Camperland of Oklahoma.
The series’ second installment featured “Campground Update” with Toby O’Rourke, president of Kampgrounds of America (KOA), the franchisor of more than 500 KOA parks throughout North America. O’Rourke takes questions regarding KOA’s 2020 performance and a breakdown of the influx of new campers as well as whether the current camping surge will continue next year.
The third episode – “RV Industry Association Year in Review” – featured the senior leadership of the RV Industry Association (RVIA) regarding the national trade association’s year in review as well as a look ahead to the coming year. Sitting in on the conversation is RVIA President & CEO Craig Kirby, RVIA Vice President of Government Affairs Jay Landers, and Karen Redfern, vice president of brand marketing for Go RVing.
The fourth episode featured a “Conversation with The Big Three,” a panel discussion with the top executives of North America’s “Big Three” RV manufacturers – Bob Martin of Thor Industries Inc., Pete Liegl of Forest River Inc. and Michael Happe of Winnebago Industries Inc. – as the reflect on a crazy 2020 and what 2021 might have in store. Combined the three manufacturers represent about 90% of the retail market and employ more than 40,000 people.
Most recently, the video series focused on the “RV Women’s Association’s Drab to Fab Project,” in which RVBusiness visits with members of the RV Women’s Alliance for an update on the group’s Drab to Fab project taking place at the RV Technical Institute, as well as a look at the group’s progress since its inception not quite two years ago.